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Rib Injuries

Rib Injuries Physical Therapy NYCThe body has 12 pairs of ribs, each of which is attached to the spine in the back. In the front, the top seven pairs of ribs are connected to the breastbone by pieces of cartilage.

The next three pairs of ribs are not connected to the sternum, but to the ribs above them, also by cartilage.

Rib pain can occur from direct trauma, compression, sudden twisting, excessive coughing, or from overtraining in football, wrestling, boxing, hockey, baseball, cycling, rowing, golfing, dance, or gymnastics.

Symptoms of rib injuries may include rib pain with deep breathing, laughing, coughing, and movement.

Our Approach

Because rib injuries impair movement and breathing, diagnostic imaging such as x-ray, MRI, or CT scan may be ordered to assess the extent of the injury. Initially relief through rest, ice, kinesiology taping, and pain medications is helpful.

As the pain subsides we may use electrical muscle stimulation, breathing training, and soft tissue techniques such as Active Release Technique®, Fascial Manipulation, or Transverse Cross Friction Massage to restore function of the rib cage and spine.
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